The Travel Guide to Niue for Families 👪 [2023]© Niue Tourism
The Travel Guide to Niue for Families 👪 [2023]

The Travel Guide to Niue for Families 👪 [2024]

© Niue Tourism

How to Plan a Family Vacation to Niue

Looking for something different in the South Pacific? Niue is far from your “fly and flop” holiday. This is the world’s largest raised coral atoll that just begs to be explored! Delve down short sea tracks to sheltered swimming holes with the clearest water and an abundance of tropical fish. Start the day off with spotting whales and dolphins on the surface and end your day with an educational session learning about the local coconut crab or watching some cultural dancing.

Needless to say, we’re enthused by the wonders of Niue and we think you and your little ones will be too. Let us show you more in this complete travel guide to Niue for families!

An Intro to Niue

Location: Niue is an island in the South Pacific Ocean, between Tonga, Samoa and the Cook Islands. It is approximately 2,400 km (1,491 mi) northeast of New Zealand. Find out more in Where is Niue Located?

Size: Niue’s area is 261 km² (101 mi²).

Climate: Daily average temperature – 25°C/77°F, yearly average rainfall – 1,95 5mm/77 in.
Find out more in What is the Weather Like in Niue?

Time zone: UTC/GMT -11
Find out more in What is the Niue Time Zone?

Population: 1,500
Find out more in Who are the People of Niue?

Languages: Niuean and English
Find out more in What is the Niue Language?

And now that the adults have their facts, how about the Fun Facts About Niue for Kids?

The Guide to Niue for Families(c) Niue Tourism

How to Get to Niue

There are three main ways to get to Niue: flights, cruises and private sailing yachts. As flights are the most popular way to get to Niue, let’s start there.

Flights to Niue

Direct flights between Auckland, New Zealand and Niue happen on a limited weekly schedule, with Auckland Airport having hundreds of connecting flights. The flight between Auckland and Niue takes approximately 210 minutes (3 hrs 30 mins). An important thing to note is that New Zealand and Niue have a 24-hour time difference, so when you depart Auckland on a Tuesday morning, you arrive in Niue on a Monday afternoon, for example.

Flights arrive at Niue at Hanan International Airport, approximately a five-minute drive from Alofi. Find out more about the airport in Which Airport to Fly to in Niue. Note that the departure process for Hanan Airport is a little unusual in that you can’t go through airport security until at least an hour after you have checked in. See Leaving Niue: The Niue Airport Departure Process for more details.

Cruises to Niue

Niue is on the itinerary of a limited number of South Pacific cruises from New Zealand, Australia and the US. Due to the rocky nature of the island, cruise passengers can only disembark at Niue if the weather and the swell are safe enough. Often visits to Niue are cancelled in bad weather. Learn more about cruising to Niue in Which Cruises Visit Niue?

Sailing to Niue

Niue has a small number of moorings available, which are recommended to be booked prior to arrival to ensure a smooth clearance process. The Niue Yacht Club provides facilities. Learn more about sailing to Niue in The Guide to Sailing to Niue.

A Note on Customs Declarations

Niue has strict biosecurity measures at the border to stop unwanted pests and diseases from entering the country. Therefore, anyone arriving in Niue has to declare any “risk items” they have packed in their luggage – even common items like food and sports gear. Be sure to read up on Arriving in Niue: Airport Customs, Biosecurity & Arrival Process so you are prepared.

Check out our complete guide on How to Get to Niue for even more tips on making your way to the island.

The Travel Guide to Niue for Families© Niue Tourism

The Best Time for a Family Trip to Niue

Niue is a tropical island with warm temperatures experienced throughout the year. It has only two distinct seasons, the hot and humid wet season and the drier and cooler dry season. Learn more in What is the Weather Like in Niue?

Dry Season (May to October)

The dry season, also called winter, is a drier and cooler season with temperatures typically around 21-27°C (70-81°F). The average monthly rainfall is 90-160 mm (3.5-6.3 in). This season is also best for whale swimming, Village Show Days and fishing for particular species like wahoo and mahimahi. On the downside, the winter school holidays for New Zealand and Australia (July) are when flights and resorts are at their most expensive.

Wet Season (November to April)

The wet season, also known as summer, is Niue’s most hot and humid season with temperatures typically 22-29°C (72-84°F). Rain tends to be more frequent than in the dry season with a monthly average of 156-300 mm (6.1-11.8 in) and there is a small risk of cyclones affecting the country. This season is best for fishing particular species like yellowfin tuna. Visiting Niue during the summer school holidays for New Zealand and Australia is when you will find cheaper flights for families, as long as you avoid Christmas and New Year.

So when is the best time to travel to Niue? Check out our complete guide, The Best Time to Visit Niue, which dives deeper into the subject.

The Travel Guide to Niue for Families©

Family Packing List for Niue

The main thing you need to keep in mind when packing for your family for Niue is to make sure everyone has a tropical wardrobe that includes some more modest items of clothing for exploring Niues’s villages. A packing list for each member of the family might look a little something like this:

  • 4 Singlets/T-Shirts
  • 2 Light blouses/shirts to cover the shoulders for church and sun protection
  • 2 Shorts/skirts which are not too short so you can enjoy wearing them at both your resort and when out exploring
  • 1 Light evening dress to impress at dinner
  • 1 Dress/skirt below the knee for church, spending time in villages, etc. We recommend light fabrics such as the sustainable bamboo dresses and skirts by Moso Morrow
  • 1 Sarong (paleu) will be your best friend for hitting the swimming holes and covering your swimwear in between. You can bring your own or there are plenty for sale once you arrive in Niue
  • 1 Light rain jacket/small umbrella (some accommodations like Scenic Matavai Resort and Taoke Fales have umbrellas to borrow)
  • 1 or 2 Light sleepwear if you’re against sleeping in your undies
  • 1 Light Cardigan/pashmina/poncho for cooler evenings
  • 1 Sports shorts/leggings for active activities
  • 1 Sports T-shirt/singlet for active activities
  • 1 Outfit to travel between Niue and home
  • 3 Bras including strapless, sports and comfort
  • 6 Underwear
  • 4 Socks
  • 1 Bikini
  • 1 One-piece for watersports
  • 2 Boardshorts for guys
  • Mask and snorkel
  • Rash vest
  • Sunhat
  • Sunglasses
  • Walking shoes/sneakers
  • Reef shoes/water shoes.

And that’s just the clothes! For a full packing list of everything to take, including accessories and toiletries, check out The Complete Packing List for Niue.

Health Products

Tap water is Ok to drink at certain accommodations on the island, but not everywhere. The island also experiences high UV levels and mosquitos, so packing products for your health is recommended. Natural kids’ sunscreens and mosquito repellents are advised to protect your family and Niue’s fragile ecosystem. Instead of buying bottled water, use reusable purification bottles for obvious environmental reasons. See our health essentials packing list in What Medication to Pack in Your First Aid Kit for Niue, as well as extra tips in 20 Tips for Your Family Niue Vacation with Kids.


The currency of Niue is the New Zealand Dollar. Cash is the most widely accepted payment method with many outlets also accepting MasterCard, Visa and New Zealand debit cards. There is no ATM on the island, but you can take money out at selected outlets. See What is the Best Way to Pay in Niue? for more information.

Travel Documents and Paperwork

To enter Niue, you need a passport that is valid for up to three months after your arrival date. A free Visitor Permit is granted upon entry if you are from a visa-waiver country. Otherwise, an Entry Permit is required. There may be other current entry requirements, which we keep up to date in What Documents Do I Need to Travel to Niue?

The Travel Guide to Niue for Families© Niue Tourism

How Long Should a Family Vacation in Niue Be?

Niue might make for an idyllic tropical getaway to simply relax for a few days  – and that’s fine; we all need to R&R from time to time. Most families, however, are here to explore one of the most unique islands in the South Pacific along with its natural attractions and marine experiences. With that in mind, here’s what you can achieve in certain timeframes…

4 Days in Niue

The shortest time period between Niue’s two flights a week, four days gives you time to do some sightseeing on both coasts of the island, as well as one tour. See Niue Family Itinerary: 4 Days for a recommended itinerary.

5 Days in Niue

For five days, you can explore both coasts of the island, as well as fit in one or two tours. See Niue Family Itinerary: 5 Days for a trip idea.

7 Days / 1 Week in Niue

One week in Niue gives you time to visit all of the major highlights along the coast, as well as do some of your bucket list activities. See Niue Family Itinerary: 7 Days for a recommended trip idea.

14 Days / 2 Weeks in Niue

This amount of time in Niue allows you to enjoy all of Niue’s coastal attractions, fit in the activities and tours you’ve dreamed of, as well as time to relax. See Niue Family Itinerary: 14 Days for an itinerary suggestion.

The Travel Guide to Niue for Families©

How to Get Around Niue

Admittedly, there are very few options for transport in Niue. Most families opt for renting their own car for ultimate freedom, but accommodation/airport transfers and perhaps cycling for older children and teens are alternatives.

Car Rentals

With no public transport on the island, renting a car is highly recommended to make the most out of Niue. Niue’s car rental operators offer airport drop-off so you can pick up your rental on arrival. There are also rental depots in Alofi and near the airport should you want to rent a car later in your trip. Note that a Niue Driver’s License needs to be purchased to legally drive in Niue. Find out more in What You Need to Hire a Car in Niue.

Airport Transfers

Many family accommodations in Niue offer airport transfer services, getting you to and from your accommodation and the airport at the start and the end of your holiday. Some offer this as a complimentary service, while others have a fee. Find out more about transfers in How to Get an Airport Transfer in Niue.

Bicycle and E-Bike Rental

Some accommodations and car rental companies hire bicycles and e-bikes to explore some of the island and bike trails. Note that the island is too big to typically enjoy cycling around and children’s bike rentals are extremely limited. Find out more in The Guide to Cycling & Mountain Biking in Niue.

For more ways to get around, as well as more transport advice, head over to our Niue Transport Guide: 11 Ways to Get Around Niue.

The Travel Guide to Niue for Families©

Where to Stay: Family Accommodation in Niue

Niue keeps its accommodation options small and intimate. There is only one resort on the island, while the rest of Niue’s accommodations come in the form of boutique cottage complexes, holiday homes and guesthouses.

We go through almost all of Niue’s accommodation options in The 30 Best Accommodations in Niue, while our top picks for families are listed in the 10 Best Family Accommodations in Niue.

The Resort

By far Niue’s largest accommodation, the Scenic Matavai Resort is a family-friendly four-star resort with a pool, restaurant and evening entertainment. The main resort has international hotel-standard rooms, while the Scenic Matavai Villas & Apartments offer self-catering facilities and its own pool. Note that the villas and apartments are approximately a kilometre away from the main resort. Find out more about the resort in the 10 Best Hotels & Resorts in Niue.

Cottage Complexes

Accommodations like Namukulu Cottages, Taloa Heights and Breeze offer a handful of self-contained cottages surrounding communal facilities, such as a swimming pool or whale lookout. Check out our descriptions of Niue’s cottage complexes in How to Pick the Best Boutique Accommodation in Niue, as well as the 10 Best Boutique Accommodations in Niue and the 10 Best Self-Catering Accommodations in Niue.

Holiday Homes

Niue has plenty of holiday homes allowing families to experience their own quiet corner of the island. Find out more in How to Pick the Best Holiday Home in Niue for You, while the top options are listed in the 10 Best Holiday Homes in Niue.


An affordable accommodation option in Niue, guesthouses and lodges are typically one large home renovated into a B&B-style accommodation. Expect private guest rooms, some with ensuites, as well as shared facilities, such as a kitchen, lounge and bathroom. Note that family rooms in this style of accommodation are extremely limited (but some do exist), so book quickly. See what else to expect in How to Pick the Right Guesthouse in Niue for You and check out our top picks in the 10 Best Guesthouses in Niue.

The Guide to Niue for Families(c) Niue Tourism

Family-Friendly Activities in Niue

Niue provides a natural playground for children, from fish-filled lagoons for safe swimming to amazing wildlife encounters. You’ll have a blast exploring the “Rock of the Pacific” as a family.

Things to Do in Niue with Kids

  • Have a swim at the Limu Pools
  • Watch whales and dolphins from the whale lookouts
  • Visit a Niuean primary school
  • Explore caves and snorkel with fish at the Talava Arches
  • Get in some pool time
  • Let the kids loose at the Tufukia Playground
  • Learn about uga, coconuts or weaving at one of the Scenic Matavai’s activities nights
  • Have an ice cream or milkshake in Alofi!

For full details of each of the above experiences, see the 20 Things to Do in Niue with Kids. Otherwise, here are some of the highlights…

Go for a Swim and a Snorkel

Niue’s coast is lined with amazing swimming spots, many of which are safe for kids! Some highlights include the Talava Arches, accessed by a 30-minute sea track through the forest and a short scramble through limestone caves. You’ll emerge with a view of the Talava Arches, as well as a safe coral-filled channel for swimming. Another popular spot for families is the Limu Pools where even parents with the littlest ones can enjoy the calm and shallow waters at low tide. For more details, check out our 8 Best Sea Tracks & Places to Swim in Niue for Kids.

Watch Whales and Dolphins from Shore

Some might be sceptical about whether you can actually get good viewings of whales and dolphins from the shores of Niue but, truly, seeing pods of dolphins leap across the surface is an almost daily occurrence for many! What’s more, between July and September, humpback whales and their calves can be seen playing on the surface, sometimes even breaching to make exciting displays! While many clifftop accommodations, like the Scenic Matavai Resort (which has binoculars for guests) and Kaliki Lodge, offer fantastic whale and dolphin watching from their properties, you’ll also find the best whale-watching sites signposted along the west coast of the island. Check out the 10 Places to Spot Whales in Niue for more information.

Family-Friendly Fishing Charters

Fishing is a big deal in Niue as a source of sustenance for the island’s inhabitants. Not to mention, it’s incredibly rewarding and exciting to hook on a fish and reel it in! Wahoo Fishing Charters is a fantastic option for families, where your experienced skipper will head to hotspots for kids to get hooked on smaller fish. Older members of your crew can try their luck at Pacific whoppers like mahimahi or wahoo. Learn more about the experience in The Ultimate Guide to Fishing in Niue.

Visit a Niue School

See what a school is like in the South Pacific and get some cultural insights from other children at the Niue Primary School. Every second Friday at 9 am, visitors are invited to their morning assembly where they do some cultural performances. Find the primary school next to the Niue High School – take the turn-off at the Police Station in Alofi. See more cultural activities like this in the 10 Best Ways to Experience the Niue Culture.

The Travel Guide to Niue for Families 👪 [2023]©

Food in Niue

Food is an integral part of the Niuean culture. Not only does the island present a wide range of eateries, but supermarkets are well stocked with supplies for a self-catering holiday. Everything you need to know about food in Niue can be found in The Food Guide to Niue: Places to Eat & Food Tours.

Restaurants and Cafes

Niue has a small but varied range of restaurants, bars and cafes with international influences including Japanese, Indian, Chinese, American, New Zealand and more. Due to limited seating at most restaurants, it’s recommended to book a table, especially in the high season. See all of the restaurants on the island in the 20 Best Restaurants in Niue.


Self-catering facilities are available at almost all of Niue’s accommodations where visitors can buy groceries from the large supermarket, Swansons Supermarket, as well as from smaller grocery stores in Alofi. See The Guide to Food Shopping in Niue for more advice.

Special Diets

With tropical vegetables and coconut cream being staple ingredients in Niue, vegans and gluten-intolerant diners are usually easy to cater for at the Niue Market and Niuean buffets but you will struggle to find “creative” options on most menus. Self-catering is advised for most travellers with special diets or providing restaurants with your own staple ingredients is another option. Check out Niue for Vegans & Vegetarians + The Best Restaurants, as well as The Gluten-Free Guide to Niue for more advice.

What Food to Try

And what are the foods worth trying in Niue? With homegrown food products, from aromatic organic Niue vanilla to honey produced from some of the world’s cleanest bees, and traditional dishes, such as uga and takihi, trying the local staples is one of the best things about visiting Niue. Niuean food is best sampled at arranged umu/Niuean buffet nights, as well as occasionally at the Niue Market and Village Show Days. Find out more about what local dishes to try in the 810 Unique Foods in Niue You Have to Try.

Food and Water Safety

Tourist accommodations in Niue typically have access to safe drinking water, whether it’s tap water with a UV-filtration system or bottled water in your fridge. See Is the Water Safe to Drink in Niue? for more advice. Food in Niue is generally cooked to safe hygiene standards, but check out Niue Safety Tips for precautions to take.

We go into much more detail on where to eat, what to eat, self-catering and food tours in The Guide to Food in Niue.

The Travel Guide to Niue for Families©

Typical Costs and Travel Budget: How Much Does a Family Trip to Niue Cost?

We all travel very differently. Therefore, making a precise budget for every family travelling to Niue is, quite frankly, an impossible task. Nevertheless, you can work out your own family’s needs, thus budget, by simply looking at the typical prices listed below or in our article, Niue Travel Budget: How Much Does a Trip to Niue Cost?

The Cost of Accommodation in Niue

The Cost of Food in Niue

  • Main breakfast meal – NZ$9-$28
  • Main lunch meal – NZ$10-$28
  • Main dinner meal – NZ$20-$43
  • Niuean buffet – NZ$65-$80/adult, NZ$30-$45/12-15 child, NZ$20-$45/3-6 child
  • Small coffee – NZ$4.50-$5
  • Can of beer – NZ$4-$6
  • Bottle of beer – NZ$8-$10
  • Glass of wine – NZ$7-$12
  • Bottle of wine – NZ$25-$46
  • Cocktail – NZ$14-$18
  • Smoothie – NZ$10
  • Soft drink – NZ$4-$6
  • Drinking coconut – NZ$4-$7

Grocery prices for self-catering can be found in What is the Cost of Food in Niue?

The Cost of Activities

And there are plenty of activities to do for free, as listed in the 10 Free & Cheap Things to Do in Niue.

The Cost of Transport

And again, check out another aspect of our travel guide to Niue, Niue Travel Budget: How Much Does a Trip to Niue Cost? for more budget tips and costs.

Spending Money for Niue

Here are a few averages for a daily budget for Niue. These include food, activities, transport and miscellaneous expenses. Each price is per person per day:

  • Budget daily budget: NZ$165
  • Mid-range daily budget: NZ$295
  • Luxury daily budget: NZ$430+

We break down the budgets further in How Much Spending Money Do You Need for Niue?

More About Niue for Families

That’s it for our complete travel guide to Niue for families but by no means the end of our tips! Check out the following guides about Niue for families:

Finally, if this complete travel guide to Niue for families wasn’t enough then be sure to check out more advice in The Complete Travel Guide to Niue, as well as the Niue Travel Tips: 31 Tips for Travelling in Niue should you be staying in the capital.


Laura S.

This article was reviewed and published by Laura, editor in chief and co-founder of Niue Pocket Guide. Since arriving solo in the South Pacific over 10 years ago with nothing but a backpack and a background in journalism, her mission has been to show the world how easy (and awesome) it is to explore a paradise such as Niue. She knows the island inside-out and loves sharing tips on how best to experience Niue’s must-dos and hidden gems. Laura is also editor of several other South Pacific travel guides.

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